Merkley Worried About Medicare Expansion for Oregon

Sen. Jeff Merkley tells the HuffingtonPost he's concerned about the Senate compromise

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December 10, 2009 -- Democrats in the Senate may not have a filibuster-proof majority for the latest health care compromise after all.

Sen. Jeff Merkley (D-Ore.), expressed deep concern on Thursday that a new proposal to expand Medicare to those as young as 55 would seriously exacerbate health care-related problems already existing in his state.

"The basic challenge for Oregon is that a program that expands Medicare using existing Medicare rates would be of very little use in our state," the senator told the Huffington Post. "And the reason why is because the reimbursement rates are so low in the state of Oregon that doctors aren't taking additional Medicare patients... They can fill their agenda and their schedules with higher-paying patients."

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